If my ex is consistently late paying alimony, what can I do?

He has never maid a payment on time in 6 years and he is financially very well off.

Asked on July 20, 2015 under Family Law, Massachusetts


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

Legally, you could go to court and seek a court order directing him to make his payments on time; and if he did not, the court could (though would not be required to) hold him in contempt of court and impose sanctions on him. Practically, it's not clear that doing so would be a good use of your time and money, so long as he does ultimately pay, even if late: you'd spend your own money on the legal action; he'd likely spend money defending against it, which in theory could impact on his ability to pay; he could become more resentful, and deliberately pay later; and if he keeps paying late and is sanctioned, those sanctions again could impact his ability to make payments. The law has good remedies for someone not paying at all; but it does not have good remedies for chronic lateness.

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